Word Association – An alternative to Anniversary Waltz

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I love anniversary waltz, but it’s not always suited to every performance environment.

When I was working at the House of Illusion this was the routine I developed as an alternative to the usual love theme in Anniversary Waltz.

I’m not going to explain my handling for Anniversary Waltz, as you can add it to any handling of your choice.

I explain to the audience:

Do you know what the word association game is?

Most will be familiar with this…

For those that don’t know, it’s  really about thinking quickly to associate one word with another…For example if I say Chair (point to someone that said they where aware of the word association game) you would say …. (they will reply with table or similar, and repeat a few times if you like)

Then there is the expert version, which is called Word Disassociation, so this is where you have to name a word completely unrelated to the previous word. For example, If I say Cat (point to someone else) you’d say… (and get another reply hopefully a really random one).

So now you are all masters of the word association and disassociation games, let’s try this. (have someone choose a card and ask them to write the first word that comes into there head on to the card in big bold letters, this card is now apparently lost in half of the deck )

You now choose another person, ask them to choose a card. Then ask them  to play the word association game with the word previously written on the last card, they now write down a word associated with the previous card on to this card.

TOP TIP: When getting someone to sign the “second” card I always say:

(name of person who signed the first card) has wrote on the (name of first card) , I would like you to take the pen and I’ll hold the cards for you and I want you to write on this card”

If you perform the A.W you will know occasionally if you hand them the “second” card they will turn it over, I avoid this ever happening by saying, take the pen, I’ll hold the cards and you write, so I’m giving them too many instructions for them to say no, it also appears like I’m helping them out by holding the card for them. I also double turnover the “second” card before asking them to sign.I also ask both people to rub the ink to make sure it’s dry, and that it’s not a special type of pen, it really is a regular sharpie, in case people think it’s some sort of drywipe marker.

The two piles of cards are then put together, and the cards are found to be next to each other, explaining, that much like the word association game; these two words are attracted to each other. Then you can take things “a step further” to join the two words together, permanently as in any A.W routine.


Why do I love this routine?

Simply It’s great fun and the start is different every time. You can get massive results and laughter at the start, especially if you are quick witted. People say some really bizarre things, which makes this whole routine great for audience interaction. Go try it!



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